Edinburgh Kings youths to play in English League next season

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City of Edinburgh’s Under-18 and Under-16 boys’ teams will compete in Basketball England’s National League in the forthcoming season.

The Kings will play in the North-East division against teams from Durham, Doncaster, Leeds and York but will continue to field a team in the Scottish Basketball Leagues at these age levels.

The Capital outfit’s Under-18 team has won the last three Scottish titles and the club has decided to pilot a season in the English set-up to gain an extra level of competition they believe will provide the best development for their young players.

With Scotland and England recently relinquishing their membership of the International Basketball Federation (FIBA) and now competing as Great Britain in international competitions, Kings believe the move will put their players in a better position to win GB recognition.

Both the Under-16 and Under-18 teams will be coached by Craig Nicol – recently named an assistant coach to the Scotland national team and the Great Britain under-16 team – with long-serving club coach Jim Wright his assistant.

Amy Morgan, City of Edinburgh Basketball Club chair said: “We are delighted that Basketball England have accepted our application to enter the U16 and U18 North East division next season. We have been working with them and basketballscotland in recent months to develop this pilot project that will see our young players pit themselves against talented athletes from England.

“Our club still remains committed to the Scottish Basketball Championships and we will be developing an approach that will provide all players with competitive opportunities to play basketball at a variety of levels and to realise their potential.

“We hope this development will build on our high-performance programme as we seek to create the next generation of Great Britain internationalists and stars of the future.”